Agriculture

Get Ready to Say Goodbye to Bananas
April 17, 2014 08:02 AM - Susan Bird, Care2

Who doesn't love a nice banana? They're tasty portable snacks, they make a great daiquiri, and they're wonderful additions to a green smoothie or bowl of oatmeal. Well, eat your fill now, because if history is any indicator, global banana production may soon be in serious jeopardy. The culprit is disease. Specifically, a strain of a tropical fungus is targeting the most popular form of banana, and there is currently no effective treatment.

Weather throws a curve
April 16, 2014 07:14 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Apparently the intense curve of the jet stream can predict the variability of an entire season and it is part of a 4,000 year pattern. Last winter's curvy jet stream in North America resulted in mild western temperatures and harsher cold temperatures in the east. University of Utah researchers reveal that a similar pattern became more pronounced 4,000 years ago, suggesting that it may worsen as Earth's climate warms.

IPCC concludes: Renewable energy shift is a must
April 15, 2014 10:34 AM - ENN Editor

Conclusions from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's are simple: rapid shifts to renewable energy are needed to avert catastrophic global warming. The IPCC's report was produced by 1250 international experts and approved by each major government in the world. The report documented increases in human-caused greenhouse gases, the source of those gases, and their climatic effect. The most significant conclusions resulting from IPPC report are: - Current efforts to reduce greenhouse gases are not enough. - Energy supply is not the only thing driving emission increases. - Big changes will be needed to avoid disaster scenarios.

Bats can help protect rice farms against pests
April 14, 2014 02:28 PM - Yao-Hua Law, SciDevNet

[KUALA LUMPUR] Bats that prey on a major rice pest in Thailand could save paddy harvests worth millions of dollars and help contribute to better food security, scientists say in a paper published in Biological Conservation recently (March).

Climate Change: We have met the enemy and they are us
April 14, 2014 09:35 AM - ENN Editor

According to McGill University physics professor Shaun Lovejoy, we have no one to blame but ourselves for global warming in the industrial era. Lovejoy and his research team have just completed an analysis of temperature data covering more than 500 years. This study all but rules out the possibility that global warming is just a natural fluctuation in the earth's climate.

2014 ten most endangered rivers
April 10, 2014 12:10 PM - ENN staff

American Rivers yesterday announced its annual list of America's Most Endangered RiversĀ®, naming California's San Joaquin River the Most Endangered River in the country. Outdated water management and excessive diversions, compounded by the current drought, have put the San Joaquin River at a breaking point.

At more than 23,000 feet, why don't bar-headed geese get hypoxic?
April 9, 2014 10:04 AM - ENN Staff

The bar-headed goose migratory path takes it over the Himalayan Mountains each year between China and Mongolia to their Indian breeding grounds. This flight path puts them at 23,917 feet above sea level. University of Exeter led study followed these birds to gain insight into their ability to survive these extreme altitudes in hopes that their findings might have future implications for low oxygen medical conditions in humans.

Why Are Scientists Genetically Modifying Trees?
April 7, 2014 10:41 AM - Kevin Mathews, Care2

The Lorax may speak for the trees, but even he might want to stop to listen to researchers' new plans to genetically alter trees. What may outwardly seem like disconcerting news just might change how paper is made for the better. The engineered trees would allow manufacturers to create paper significantly easier. Moreover, it's not just the paper industry that benefits from this change — the effects would be advantageous to the entire planet.

Nutritional quality of food crops decreases as CO2 levels rise
April 7, 2014 08:02 AM - ClickGreen Staff, ClickGreen

A field test has demonstrated for the first time that elevated levels of carbon dioxide restrict plants' ability to transform nitrate into proteins, indicating that the nutritional quality of food crops is at risk as climate change intensifies.

Badger Culls in England Will Not Expand
April 6, 2014 09:32 AM - Judy Molland, Care2

This is great news for most of the badger population of England. Plans to roll out the controversial badger cull pilots nationwide across England have been dropped by the Environment Secretary, Owen Paterson, after an independent report found the shoots were not effective or humane. The pilot programs were run in Gloucestershire and Somerset in an effort to stop the spread of Bovine Tuberculosis among cattle, and the environment department's original plan was to announce up to 10 new cull areas each year.

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